Atlanta Public Schools
6:47 pm
Mon August 26, 2013

Former Governor Takes Stand in Trial Against Atlanta Educator

The prosecution continued to lay out the details as to why the state had to conduct an investigation in the first place.

Former Georgia governor Sonny Perdue testified as to why he kept pushing for an investigation into cheating within the Atlanta Public Schools.
Former Georgia governor Sonny Perdue testified as to why he kept pushing for an investigation into cheating within the Atlanta Public Schools.
Credit WABE 90.1 FM

The first person on the stand was former Georgia governor Sonny Perdue.

Becoming emotional, Purdue testified as to why he signed an executive order to pursue the cheating. Perdue was asked if there was a political agenda involved as to why he kept pushing for an investigation.

The former Republican governor said no and even lost friendships over it.

Perdue said the only way to get to the truth was to involve the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Stacey Smith taught third grade at Usher-Collier Heights Elementary School. She was just into her teaching career.

Today a tearful Smith told the court about the pressure to meet targets based on the CRCT exam.

Smith talked about her involvement.

Why did she cheat? Fulton County’s Chief Senior Assistant Clint Rucker asked Smith.

Cotman's attorney, Benjamin Davis, asked Stacey Smith to confirm she was given immunity by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Smith said yes. She did not testify that Tamara Cotman personally pressured her, but rather to the pressure from Donald Bullock, the school’s testing coordinator.